Comedian Tom Simmons will come to Western on Feb. 21 as part of the three-part Viking Comedy Fest series put on by the Associated Students Production (ASP) Special Events.
“Simmons is very generally funny, but at the same time to brings up important issues,” ASP special events assistant coordinator Rahim Khoja said. “He deals with things like education in a joking, but serious, way. It is impressive what he can do.”
According to his personal Web site, Simmons has appeared on a variety of TV shows including, “Live at Gotham” on Comedy Central, “White Boyz in the Hood” on Showtime and featured on “Comic View” on BET. He also writes and produces comedy for television and has released four comedy CD's, Khoja said. In addition, Simmons has appeared at the Just For Laughs Festival in Canada, the Boston Comedy Festival and Comics on Duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to Simmons' biography.
“Tom Simmons is a really funny and subtle comedian, he has a great delivery and style to him and he also talks about pertinent and important issues happening around the world,” ASP director Jeff Talbot said.
Simmons has not performed much in the Washington area, and this is his first time at Western, according to Khoja. He will be performing at 7 p.m. on Feb. 21 in the VU Multipurpose Room. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and costs $5 for Western students and $8 without ID.
Earlier in the quarter the ASP Special Events hosted comedian Kermet Apio. On March 4, the office is bringing Daniel Kinno to perform.
“Kinno is a Russian immigrant, and he incorporates that into his humor,” Khoja said. “His entertainment takes some knowledge because it is a different perspective. He uses his experiences as an influence into his comedy and why he wants to be an American. This will be a good show.”
According to his biography, Kinno has appeared on MTV, The Game Show Network and The WB. He has also appeared at The Just For Laughs Festival and has traveled to Afghanistan.
The ASP Special Events office is given a budget at the beginning of the year to spend on events that they want to host. According to Khoja, the Viking Comedy Fest is an opportunity for affordable, high-quality entertainment for Western students.
“Viking Comedy Fest was started as a way for students have something to be excited for on a month by month basis,” Talbot said. “We wanted to bring in regional comedians that would bring out some people and have good laugh for the students.”
ASP Special Events coordinator Adam Bates said his office had high hopes for the Viking Comedy Fest at Western.
“This is an experimental thing a little bit, nothing like this has been done at Western,” Bates said. “Historically, unless it's a really big name comedian, attendance is not all that big. We kind of took a chance by planning this and putting it all together. We're hoping to really boost numbers and generate some interest.”
“I encourage students to check out the comedians' Web site sites beforehand to watch some of their media,” Khoja said.
Simmons' Web site is http://www.tomsimmons.net and Kinno's is http://www.danielkinno.com.
“We are always looking for new ideas of events that we can try and host,” Khoja said. “We want to hear and know what students want more of.”